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A premises liability claim holds a property owner accountable for any losses brought on by an injury sustained on their grounds. Owners who inhabit a property are required by law in every state to take reasonable steps to keep it a safe place for guests to come. "Premises responsibility" refers to failure to maintain the property in a safe manner for guests.

Limitations on Recovering for Premises Liability

  • An injured party who is largely or entirely to blame for what transpired will not be entitled to compensation for losses brought on by a dangerous property condition.

  • A visitor has a responsibility to take reasonable precautions to ensure their own safety. The recovery may be diminished by the visitor's percentage of culpability to the degree that they did not exercise reasonable care.

The Property Owner’s Duty of Care

  • An invitee is a person who has the express or implied consent of the landowner to enter the premises. Often, invitees include friends, family members, and neighbors. Historically, the proprietor had a duty of care to keep an invitee reasonably safe while on the property.

  • A licensee is someone who is on the property with the landowner's express or implicit consent but is doing so for personal gain.

  • In the past, the landowner only had a minimal responsibility to notify licensees about hazardous conditions that pose an unacceptable risk of harm if the landowner was aware of them and it was unlikely that the licensee would be able to find them.

  • The landowner had a responsibility to take reasonable precautions to eliminate any danger of child harm that could have been foreseen due to artificial conditions on the property.

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